Motivation Progress From Beginner to Advanced Lower Body Exercises By Paige Waehner Updated June 18, 2018 Pin Flip Email Print Deadlift. Justin Sullivan / Staff / Getty Images More in Motivation New Year's Resolutions This lower body progression workout shows some examples of how to progress from beginner exercises to moves that are a little more advanced. You'll know you're ready to move on to the next progression once you've mastered the move and can easily perform 2-3 sets of up to 16 reps with perfect form. Use good form and see your doctor if you have any injuries or medical conditions. Build Your Lower Body Workout There are many ways you can use this chart to create your own lower body workout: Option 1: Pick a column doing them one after the other circuit-style for 8-16 reps, repeating that circuit 1-3 times.Option 2: Pick a column and do each exercise shown for straight sets, 1-3 sets of 10-16 reps with 30-60 seconds of rest in between.Option 3: Mix and match from several columns - e.g., ball squats, assisted lunges, dumbbell deadlifts, etc.- and choose either circuit style or straight sets Beginner Intermediate Advanced Chair SquatFor beginners, the chair or assisted squat is a great place to start when getting used to squats. Take the feet about hip distance apart and squat, taking the hips back while keeping the torso straight and the abs engaged. Ball SquatThe ball can add great back support, but it can also add intensity because it allows you to squat lower. Keep the weight in the heels and hold weights for more intensity. Dumbbell/Barbell SquatTake the ball away and add heavy weights and you now have to use your own strength and muscle to keep good form. Assisted LungesLunges are a tough but excellent exercise because they work multiple muscles. Assisted lunges allow you to hold onto a wall for balance as you lunge up and down. Be sure to lunge straight down rather than forward, which can strain the knees. Static LungesThis more advanced version takes the chair away, forcing you to use your own muscles to stay balanced as you lunge. Adding weights will really increase the intensity. Around the World LungesYour next progressions are these Around the World Lunges. Now you're going the lunge forward, squat out to the side and then lunge to the rear, hitting every muscle in the lower body. Add weights for more intensity. Hip HingeDeadlifts are often hard to master, which is why I love the hip hinge. Use a broomstick and keep it in contact with your head and lower back as you hinge forward at the hips, knees just slightly bent the entire time. Dumbbell DeadliftsIf you've perfected the hip hinge, adding weights is the next progression, which will really challenge your core, as well as your glutes, hamstrings and lower back. One Legged DeadliftsTaking one foot behind you and keeping all your weight on the front leg will make this exercise even harder. Anytime you do something on one leg instead of two you'll be adding intensity. Leg LiftsThe leg lift is a classic exercise that targets the glutes. It's shown here on a ball and can also be done on the floor. Standing Leg LiftsThe standing leg lift is harder because you use more muscles to balance your body. Add intensity by using ankle weights. Bent Over Ball Leg LiftsThis version is deceptively hard because the ball adds instability. Keep the hips square throughout the movement. Inner-Thigh Ball SqueezeThis move is already pretty challenging, taking the ball up and squeezing it, only releasing about halfway. If this is too hard, keep the legs on the floor and lean back on your elbows. Squat and SqueezeNow we've taken the ball squeeze and changed it up a bit, making the ball a medicine ball and incorporating it into a squat, making this an even more intense exercise. Squat With Inner Thigh Leg LiftThis becomes a compound move once you add a squat to the mix, making this a great lower body exercise that works multiple muscles. The resistance band really adds intensity. One-Leg PressIf you don't have a leg press machine, this is one version you can do at home using a heavy band or tube. Just hold the handles and press the leg up and out. Leg Press on BallBy moving onto the ball you once again add instability to the move, so now you engage a number of muscle groups while you work. Push through the heels instead of the toes. One-Legged Ball PressBy switching to one leg, you add intensity and a balance challenge. This is an advanced move, so be careful and put your hands down for balance, if needed. Was this page helpful? Thanks for your feedback! Get exercise tips to make your workouts less work and more fun. Email Address Sign Up There was an error. Please try again. Thank you, , for signing up. What are your concerns? 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